Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Valley Gardens consultation - update 2

A public consultation on the Valley Gardens master plan will open on 16th September and run until 29th September. One hopes that somewhat better visualisations will be made available by then. The full size pdf of the above illustration can be viewed here.

The aims of the plan are to upgrade the public spaces and improve routes for pedestrians, cyclists, drivers and public transport. The provisional proposals are as follows:-
  • On the west side a park road for buses and cyclists.
  • On the east side a tree-lined avenue for all north-south traffic with wider pavements.
  • Closure of the vehicle crossing point at the south end of St. Peter's.
  • Simplified pedestrian crossing points.
  • Re-alignment of Marlborough Place with  the North Gate of the Pavilion thus creating a hard landscaped area for leisure/community use.
  • Extra bus-stop in Marlborough Place.
  • Improved bus-stops at the Pavilion while retaining the present art deco shelters.
  •  Changing the seafront roundabout to a junction to improve pedestrian access to the beach & Pier.
  • Increase the attractiveness and biodiversity of the public spaces with additional trees including a legacy planting strategy to ensure the area maintains its important elm heritage and other planting to provide habitat for animals. The the overall landscape design will maximise opportunities for grey water harvesting.
If the proposals are delivered in full, there will be a slight (7.6%) reduction in the size of the green spaces currently running through the centre of Valley Gardens. However, much of this existing green space has limited benefit from either a biodiversity or recreational perspective, and planners feel that this slight loss will be more than compensated for by the overall improvements.

Improvements within Valley Gardens are likely to be delivered in phases over coming years as opportunities arise. However, the project is not just a paper exercise. Funding for initial improvements has been secured through a ‘Better Bus Areas’ bid and this work will start later in 2013. Indicative funding in the Local Transport Plan and funding from various developments in the area also provides opportunities to start improving Valley Gardens in the near future.

Valley Gardens consultation - update
Valley Gardens consultation

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